Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Govt National Objectives Framework a significant step

Media Release: Government’s National Objectives Framework a significant step

The Government has today released an amended National Policy Statement for Freshwater Management, including a National Objectives Framework, which sets national bottom lines for some freshwater quality parameters.

“The creation of a National Objectives Framework was a key recommendation of the Land and Water Forum. It is significant step forward to have national bottom lines which will guide objective and limit setting around the country,” said EDS Chairman Gary Taylor.

“The content of the National Objectives Framework was always going to be critical. We have some concerns as to whether the detail will in fact lead to the water quality improvements New Zealanders are demanding.

“Submitters said that they wanted to be able to swim in lakes and rivers close to where they live. However the National Policy Statement includes a new objective to ‘safeguard the health of people and communities, at least as affect by secondary contact with fresh water’. This means that there is no national requirement for lakes and rivers to be swimmable because secondary contact is limited to wading.

“This means that communities will need to fight for the right to swim in local lakes and rivers. Instead of giving New Zealanders certainty this means we will have to continue to engage in litigation.

“Safeguarding the life-supporting capacity of freshwater bodies remains a key objective of the National Policy Statement. However, we are concerned that the National Objectives Framework does not provide national bottom lines consistent with this objective.

“The Macroinvertebrate Index (MCI) (a measure of invertebrates living in rivers) is the best way to measure ecosystem health. Despite cross-sector agreement in the Land and Water Forum on the need to include MCI, Ministers appear to have vetoed its inclusion in the National Objectives Framework.

“The National Objectives Framework puts in place a national bottom line for nitrogen toxicity. This is a big problem. The Board of Inquiry which recently heard the Tukituki Catchment Proposal rejected proposed nitrogen toxicity limits, deciding that dissolved inorganic nitrogen limits are required to maintain ecosystem health. This is the case throughout New Zealand.

“The inclusion of a national bottom line for nitrogen toxicity means there is a risk regional councils will view this as an appropriate limit. We are going to have to argue for nitrogen limits that will achieve ecosystem health in each freshwater planning process. Instead of providing certainty this omission means we will have to continue to engage in litigation.

“There are a number of Land and Water Forum recommendations still to be implemented, including a new collaborative freshwater plan making process. Unfortunately, legislation to implement collaborative plan making has been held up due the Government’s fixation on amending Part 2 of the RMA,” Mr Taylor concluded.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Greens: Russel Norman To Stand Down As Co-Leader

Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman has announced today that he will stand down as leader at the party’s Annual General Meeting in May. Dr Norman will remain as Co-leader and retain his finance and climate change portfolios until the AGM.

“After nearly a decade as Co-leader, now is a good time to find a new challenge for myself, and to spend more time with my family” said Dr Norman.

“This is my ninth year as Co-leader and I think it’s time for a change. Now is a good time for new leadership for the Party. My replacement will start from a strengthened base and will have a full parliamentary term to establish himself in the role and take the Greens into government in 2017." More>>

 

Gordon Campbell: On The Eleanor Catton Rumpus

If anyone was in doubt about the accuracy of the comments made in India by Eleanor Catton, the reaction from some quarters here at home has gone a long way to proving her point… More>>

ALSO:

More Rent Assistance, Less State-Owned Housing: John Key Speech - Next Steps In Social Housing

"We are going to ensure that more people get into social housing over the next three years, whether that is run by Housing New Zealand or a community provider. The social housing budget provides for around 62,000 income-related rent subsidies a year. We are committed to increasing that to around 65,000 subsidies by 2017/18, which will cost an extra $40 million a year." More>>

ALSO:

The Future Of Work: Andrew Little - State Of The Nation 2015

In 2005 when I led the EPMU we worked together with Air New Zealand to find a way to keep engineering jobs that were heading overseas. A lot of these workers were people I’d known for years and they were facing not just losing their jobs but not being able to find the kind of work they do without going overseas. A lot of people were facing personal and financial upheaval.... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Sabin Case, The Pressures On Greece And (Songs About) Coyotes

Mike Sabin is a National MP, and the current chairman of Parliament’s law and order committee. Yet reportedly, he is being investigated by the Police over an assault complaint... However, the PM will not comment on any aspect of the story. More>>

ALSO:

Houses, ISIS, King (& Catton): PM Post-Cabinet Press Conference

The Prime Minister met with reporters to discuss: • Social housing, the Auckland housing market • The prospect of joining international forces to combat ISIS • David Bain’s compensation • The lowering of the flag for the King of Saudi Arabia's death ... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Tomorrow’s Speeches By John Key And Andrew Little

The Key government has already kicked off the political year on a stridently ideological note, with Environment Minister Nick Smith choosing to lay all manner of sins at the door of the RMA. Tomorrow, the government will wheeling out its best salesman – Prime Minister John Key – to sell its plans for state housing… . More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news